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From left, Leesburg Council member Doug Jones and 2022 Council Vice President Tom Moore review paperwork at Monday night’s meeting. InkFreeNews photo by Lasca Randels

By Lasca Randels

LEESBURG — The Leesburg Town Council meeting began with the election of officers for the new year.

Christina Archer will serve as council president, Tom Moore will fill the role of vice president and Doug Jones will serve as council member.

Leesburg Street Commissioner Craig Charlton told council members he obtained a quote from Insight Pipe Contracting out of Harmony, Pa., regarding storm drain issues in the town’s center alley, which starts at Pearl Street and goes west a block and a half.

The storm drain consists of 480 feet of pipe that is 24 inches in diameter. 

The high end of the bid is $72,000 and would involve cleaning the pipe out and reinforcing/replacing the piping, which would probably last 75 years, Charlton said.

At this point, the pipe is about a third full of gravel, Charlton said. 

“If that would fill up, you would lose your drain capacity from Harrison to about a block off of 15,” Charlton said. 

Council members agreed that if they delay addressing the issue and the condition worsens, it will lead to a much more costly fix.

Discussion arose about obtaining additional quotes. Charlton told council members that Insight Pipe Contracting will be performing work in Warsaw this year. The storm drain project will involve bringing in large pieces of equipment, Charlton said, which leads to additional cost. He explained that because the company will already be working in the area, if Leesburg engages the company’s services during that time, it will cut down on the equipment fee. 

Council also took into consideration that they have been attempting to obtain bids on the project for over a year with virtually no response.

Moore said this is because, although the project is a big one for Leesburg, it’s a small project from a contractor’s view, especially when you consider the large equipment required.

“Although ordinarily, I would say get multiple bids, when we’re looking at a situation where we may or may not be able to get additional bids on that and even if we do, just as you stated, the amount to move in all the equipment and everything else would probably negate us choosing a different company,” Archer said. “We have an opportunity to get this problem solved at a price we can afford and within a timeline before we have an even greater problem, which is the real critical element, getting it fixed before we have a bigger problem on our hands.”

A motion was passed to accept the proposal from Insight and move forward with the project.

Council will also be looking into encumbering $6,000 from the 2021 roads and streets fund to be used toward the storm drain project.

In another matter, Jones said the issue of traffic control in Leesburg and a potential contract between the Town of Leesburg and Claypool Police Department is still in limbo. Jones will be contacting additional insurance companies in an effort to move forward with the process.  

In other news: 

  • A public hearing was held for an alley vacating request. No one spoke out in opposition of the request. Attorney Travis McConnell attended the meeting as representation for the petitioners. The town will move forward with the request.
  • The matter of sewer rate review will be on the February agenda.
  • Town Council would like to remind residents of the following: no parking on any street between 3-5 am (every day); No burning anything anytime; and please be mindful of what you flush
  • The next regular meeting will be 6:30 p.m. Feb. 14.

From left, Council member Doug Jones, Vice President Tom Moore and Council President Christina Archer. InkFreeNews photo by Lasca Randels